I can promise you that the first several lines of dialogue and scenes of “Molkipolki” will have you scratching your head and wondering what on Earth you’ve signed up for in watching this film. The effect of that curiosity should be a net positive – I had to know where this film was going to go from how it started. Would there be ANY chance whatsoever that this was somehow going to make some kind of sense by the end? For real y’all…am I having an acid flashback, or perhaps the first signs of a stroke?
So what ARE we doing here? Are we touring through real estate, looking for a new place to buy? Are we playing pretend with an adult male that refuses to grow up? Does he see dead people that we can’t see and wants to rent out his place to them or invite them over to hang out & talk in his bizarre living room? And what are we to make of all the strange music that comes drifting in & out - or the fact that each and every day seems like it is probably exactly the same to the main character we see? This whole film is built on the ABSENCE of what makes our everyday life worth living…as in, we don’t see other people, we don’t see him watching an actual TV – heck, we don’t even see him drinking out of an actual glass! He doesn’t use a real fork or eat food, we can see, yet he also manages to get his meal all over the front of his shirt, too! Weird, right? He’s actually IN some kind of relationship, as far as we can possibly tell. We see interactions, intense emotions, and, of course, we hear him repeating the phrase “molkipolki” to himself over and over and over. Which ain’t exactly easy to say – try it ten times yourself back-to-back and see how well you’d do with dialogue like that. The word, or phrase, I’m genuinely not sure which it really is, ends up substituting for every single other word you could find in the dictionary.
I’m very proud to admit I’m completely built for this kind of strangeness – I know why films like this make their way to the screen in front of me. I was born to be an interpreter for the odd, and I’ve never had to use my skills as much as I might have to in discussing “Molkipolki.” You’ll see this guy talk a blue streak, just saying “molkipolki” on repeat rapid-fire – he’s animated, no doubt about that – but you’ll also find that the most effective and evocative scenes come through the moments where he’s actually saying nothing at all. Things get even MORE strange when the soundtrack all of a sudden introduces a song with MORE words than the main character has ever said, with lines like “man, I’m horny” and “show me the nipple” – is this supposed to be a representation of our main characters thoughts? When he’s standing in a house, completely ALONE and by himself? Is he gonna f**k a ghost? We have to wonder.
As much as I’m amused by this, I still have to be objective about it, too. Most folks out there wouldn’t give “Molkipolki” more than five minutes of their time; that’s the reality we’re looking at here. I’m not at all suggesting that means this is a bad film – I don’t think that’s actually the case – but it can still be true that most people wouldn’t be able to handle this much of an experimental idea and concept at the same time. You combine that with the location - all taking place inside one house, with a cast of just one person…and lemme tell ya – it’s gonna be nothing but a total uphill battle to get “Molkipolki” seen by human eyeballs. Even my own amusement still has limitations – there’s really just not that much here. You have to completely wonder how a film like this gets made, yet admire its commitment all the same. Most of us would have given up on this idea if we’d even had the courage to start it…but uniqueness isn’t something that necessarily translates into something watchable & I fear that “Molkipolki” is the proof.
I can promise you this – you’ve never seen someone struggle so hard to eat an imaginary meal before. It becomes a somewhat metaphorical scene in the sense that, if this movie were watching its audience, it’d never have seen people struggling so hard to comprehend what they’re consuming with their eyes. I’m presumably as human as you are, and I couldn’t make a single ounce of sense out of what I’d seen in the forty-five minutes of “Molkipolki” – this could be THE most bizarre film I’ve ever seen in my entire LIFE.
So, if that was the point, then great, mission accomplished! Yet, at the end of the day, things have got to make some sort of tangible sense…and I’m not convinced that Kyril Zach has accomplished that even remotely enough for the average everyday viewer to grasp. He’s written, produced, directed, filmed, edited, and starred in this film singlehandedly. Would he have benefitted from an outside voice telling him to rein it in? Yup! You betcha. I’ll say this – no one who watches it will feel indifferent about it by the end, and everyone who finishes it WILL remember what they experienced. For better or worse, there’s always value in that. I’m gonna have to be as honest with Zach as I am with everyone else, though, and say that there’s just not enough here. It’s a heck of a lot for one man to accomplish, but it’s not enough for the many people out there who would watch it, whether we’re talking about the way it’s filmed, the concept, or even the acting that’s involved. I’m regretfully going to have to go with a generous two stars out of five for “Molkipolki” and wish that I could have somehow given this kind of zany, off-the-wall uniqueness a more positive reaction.